Managing Your Career - Other

Top 10 Qualities and Skills Employers Seek

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"Top 10 Qualities and Skills Employers Seek"
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How do employers decide who to hire?  Do they look for the best and the brightest?  Do good looks count?  How about networking or family connections?  Many job seekers wonder why they don't get a particular job.  It's true that there may be a number of subjective reasons for hiring people but that shouldn't be something you worry about.   A good employer, one worth working for, will be looking for high quality employees with good attributes. Here's a list of the top 10 qualities and skills that employers seek.

1) Loyalty

Employers are looking for loyalty at all levels of the organization. Employers need to be able to trust their employees to work professionally to meet the employer's best interests. Employers do not want to hire people who require close scrutiny or who can't be trusted to represent the company in public.

2) Honesty

Employers want employees to give them accurate, timely information. Managers are dependent upon this information in order to make good business decisions.

3) Problem-solving skills

Companies are looking for people who are motivated enough to take on challenges with minimal direction. They don't want to have to tell people to react when fires are burning - the employee should know that something needs to be done and then work to fix the problem.

4) Communication skills - oral and verbal

I can't emphasize these skills enough. You need to be able to communicate clearly and effectively in either medium. Yes, that includes E-Mail.  Verbal communication is also a key component, whether it's in meetings, on the telephone, or while giving a presentation. If they can't understand you, they can't make good use of you.

5) Technical competency

Most positions require certain skills, often backed up by a professional designation. This is true in the accounting, financial, engineering, human resources, information technology, and legal fields, plus many others. If you're hired to sell software, you'd better have some selling skills!

6) Flexibility

Business leaders aren't omniscient and they make mistakes. They also have to react rapidly to changing business conditions. They need people who can change gears and focus quickly and adapt their working hours as required.

7) Work ethic

I think it goes without saying that employers want workers who will work hard and who are committed to meeting deadlines.

8) Determination and persistence

This is extremely important. Managers will give employees challenging goals, but generally they are achievable. The key is to be able to work hard and keep moving things forward when you encounter obstacles.

9) Ability to work in harmony with co-workers

I was going to use teamwork, but that's been done to death and it's also implicit in some of the other qualities. However, employers, and managers in particular, really really like to have people who can get along with their colleagues and who can act maturely and responsibly in difficult circumstances. "High maintenance" employees give managers the willies.

10) Eager and willing to learn new skills and add to their knowledge base

Along with flexibility, employers need employees who can and will learn new skills when needed. People with a lifelong interest in learning will fit the bill.

Take these attributes to heart if you want to know what the top 10 qualities are that employers seek.

More about this author: Mark Dykeman

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